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I’m so confused

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  • I’m so confused

    I’m 17 and I’m getting my license soon but once I have it can I leave my house when I please I’m not saying running away or anything I mean just drive to the park so I can cool down after a heated argument with my mom right now I can’t go anywhere I’m always stuck at home since I’m homeschooled and I’m going crazy all I want to do it drive to a park... so once I get my license and I want to go but my mom threatens to call the cops on me what law would I be breaking? I’m not running away and I’m not driving illegally? Someone please help me out oh and btw I’m from CA if that matters.

  • #2

    We are glad you are reaching out to us because we are here to help! It sounds like you are going through a lot, but reaching out to us is a good first step in figuring out your options.

    While we aren’t legal experts, we do know a few bits of information that may be helpful to you while considering your options. You mentioned that you would like to leave your house and drive to the park to cool down. Until you are an adult (in CA that age is 1, leaving home without your mom’s permission can be considered running away. That means that whether you are gone for just 10 minutes and are a few miles away, or gone for days at a time, your mom has the option to call the police and file you as a runaway. While running away isn’t illegal, it can be considered a status offense. That means that while you wouldn’t get arrested for leaving without permission, the police could pick you up if they know where you are and bring you back home. If you were to go to a friend’s house or a relative’s home, your mom could also press charges on them as that is considered “harboring a runaway.” Without knowing the full situation, we want you to be aware that your mom could tell the police other things to escalate the situation. Claiming you stole the car or that you are missing may change the way the police handle the situation (ie. As a robbery or missing person’s case). These legal actions can be avoided if you get permission from your mom to leave. It may be a good option to get the permission in writing (such as a text or note) or a note of some kind. Do you think that your mom might give you permission? Sometimes it helps to offer a safe place with people she trusts (such as a relative or family friend) as an alternative.

    You mentioned that you and your mom have heated arguments. How often do these arguments happen? We’re here to help, but we are also here to listen. If you wanted to talk through your situation with one of our Liners, our hotline at National Runaway Safeline (1-800-786-2929) is confidential and 24/7. We have people on the line you are there to support you in your time of need.

    If you wanted to discuss the options above or think of new options, we are here to help!

    Best of luck!
    Please remember you can reach us directly by calling our 24 hour hotline, 1-800-RUNAWAY (786-2929) or through our Live Chat.

    National Runaway Safeline
    [email protected] (Crisis Email)
    1-800-RUNAWAY (24 Hour Hotline)

    Tell us what you think about your experience!


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